Thursday, July 12, 2012

An Underwear Overview

There's no question that we are a more liberal society than that founded by our forefathers.

In their time, the glimpse of a lady's ankle was considered scandalous.

No doubt, one episode of "Jersey Shore" would knock most of them back on their heels.

So it's doubtful that George Washington and John Adams knew a lot about ladies underwear of the day.

(History suggests that Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin, on the other hand, may have had a familiarity their peers lacked.)

Luckily for those of us who want to know more about Colonial undergarments, Pottstown has Lynn Symborski.

The educator at Pottstown's very own Pottsgrove Manor, ancestral manse of Pottstown Founder John Potts, Symborski will be the guest speaker at the monthly meeting of the Pottstown Historical Society Monday at 7 p.m.

The historical society is located at 568 High St.

I know, it's not exactly Victoria's Secret is it?
She will present a program irresistibly called "Intimacies: An overview of Underwear in the 18th Century."

Michael T. Snyder, editor of the historical society's newsletter, joked that the title "conjures up images of a Victoria's Secret Catalog for Colonials."

But the program is part of the current exhibit at Pottsgrove Manor: "Matters Persona, Details Private: Cleanliness, Hygiene and Personal Pursuits in the Colonial Home."

As Mike writes, "the exhibit explores how home life, personal effects, health and hygiene intersected with the sensibilities, emotions and desires of these people."

The educator at Pottsgrove Manor for more than four years, Symborski has a degree from the Moore College of Art in Philadelphia and takes particular interest in historic textiles.

She has a web site featuring her work at where her work in this area is featured.

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On another note, the Pottstown Historical Society is now on Facebook, friend them to be kept abreast of all their activities.


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